How are the local agricultural sector and rural advisory services coping with COVID-19?

GFRAS and YPARD are looking for are novel stories on local solutions that enable the agricultural sector to operate under the current partial or full lock-down of society. We would especially encourage young people to share local success stories. Winners will be awarded a cash gift in the magnitude of USD 500 for first place USD 250 for second and USD 100 for third place.

1. Eligible countries are BangladeshCameroonColombiaCosta RicaGrenadaKenyaKyrgyzstan, and Malawi.

2. There will be two categories, a general category and a special youth category for people below 30 years of age (verified by ID/passport submission) each with their own contest.

3. Participants can submit UNTIL MAY 10TH entries in the following formats:

Written text, accompanied by photos: submissions must respect the minimum and maximum requirements of 500 and 700 words, and must be an original work that has not been previously published. Any references made must be credited and noted. Between 2-4 captioned photos illustrating what is written in the text should be included. Not submitting photos will give a lower score. 

Videos: they must be between 60 and 120 seconds long and not previously published elsewhere. Submissions exceeding 120 seconds (or 2 minutes) may be disqualified. Videos must be uploaded as one single file in the highest quality.


Magdalena Blum (FAO), Francesca Cofini (FAO) and Rasheed Sulaiman V (AESA) have prepared a new FAO publication:

AGRICULTURAL EXTENSION IN TRANSITION WORLDWIDE: POLICIES AND STRATEGIES FOR REFORM reviews the major reforms being considered internationally – reforms that aim to change the policy and institutional structure and operations of public sector agricultural extension systems, and thus enhance a transition to better coordinated pluralistic, demand-led advisory systems. The advantages and disadvantages of each aspect of these reforms are examined and illustrated by the selected case studies.

The modules provide a foundation for extension reform affecting the entire set-up and mode of operation of agricultural extension. This review of reforms is intended to provide insights for senior-level officials and others interested in the development of agricultural advisory systems and aim to provide a basis for informed decision-making by government policy-makers and senior management of extension and advisory services, as well as agricultural advisors.

The publication is available for download here:

The Operational Plan is the document that guides the work priorities for the GFRAS network for a five-year period and is based on the GFRAS strategic framework for the period 2016-2025.

The draft version of the Operational Plan contains a list of activities suggested by the regional and sub-regional networks that collectively constitute GFRAS, and is now available for download:

Many of these activities are relevant and will add value to rural advisory services providers and the farming communities that they serve. Unfortunately, we cannot do all of them at the same time and therefore require your assistance in setting priorities.

For prioritising the activities we ask you to kindly fill in this poll and reflect upon which activities you believe are most relevant, indicating TWO (2) activities per strategic field.

If you have feedback to the entire operational plan, please channel this through one of the regional networks, no later than April 30th 2020. The more constructive and critical feedback we receive, the better we can assure that what GFRAS does adds value and relevance to your daily work and to our joint effort of contributing to the Sustainable Development Goals by improving the livelihoods of family farmers around the world.



Considering the Global COVID-19 pandemic, at this juncture we would like to encourage all our community to closely follow government instructions in their countries and regions. Safety is the number one priority at this point in time. We do recognize the important task the agricultural sector currently has in keeping the locked-down populations supplied.

GFRAS continues to work remotely while following government recommendations, and is closely monitoring how the current outbreak will impact project implementation and RAS work across the globe, and has created a special section in the website with recommendations and initiatives linked to RAS and maintaining food availability for people under home quarantine so the pandemic is not aggravated by a food supply crises and/or a food price crises.

The 10th GFRAS Annual Meeting, focused on the "Role of RAS in Climate Change & Disaster Risk Management" took place at the Royalton Negril, Jamaica between 30 September and 3 October, 2019 and was organized back-to-back with the first General Assembly of GFRAS on October 4th, and the Steering Committee meeting on October 5-7.  The Annual Meeting was co-organized with the Caribbean Agricultural Extension Providers’ Network (CAEPNet); Jamaica’s Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture, and Fisheries (MICAF), and the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA). The final report of the meeting is now available, and brings forward the content of discussions and recommendations regarding Climate Change & Disaster Risk Management.


You can download it here: